Publisher description for Contemporary Pakistan : political processes, conflicts, and crises / Veena Kukreja.


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Since its creation in 1947, Pakistan has undergone a turbulent process of nation building in the backdrop of inter-ethnic strife, social and economic strains, and influences of global and regional pressures.

This book discusses the political processes in contemporary Pakistan with the aim to understand the crises the country is confronted with. The author provides insights into Pakistan's traumatic political history - one that exemplifies a long-drawn battle between authoritarianism and constitutionalism - and an enduring ideological conflict between Islamic nationalism, regionalism and elite pluralism.

The author examines the importance of the militia in Pakistan and the role it plays as the final arbitrator in the country. The three coups of 1958, 1969 and 1977 have been taken into account while studying the strategies and tactics that the militia adopted for its survival, sustenance and legitimization. Especially relevant is the chapter that discusses at length General Pervez Musharraf's coming to power through the 1999 - coup highlighting his legitimacy tactics and the future prospects.

The economy of Pakistan has been discussed in detail focussing on the current economic crisis, the feudal structure, high defence expenditure and burgeoning debt burden. In this relation comes the discussion on the parallel drug economy of the country with its triangular linkages and the nexus between politics, army, terrorism and narcotics.

The author discusses Pakistan's precarious internal political balance which has been accentuated by an adverse regional environment. The hostile relations between Pakistan, India and Afghanistan have made the situation more complex. Even after 55 year's of its creation Pakistan has not been able to build a democratic polity. The nation has been battered by long spells of military rule and even longer periods of religious, ethnic and economic turmoil.

The book is current and timely. The evolving situation in Pakistan after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001 and the role of the Pakistani military regime have been analyzed. The United States military offensive on Afghanistan and its impact on the society, polity and economy of Pakistan have been examined.


Library of Congress subject headings for this publication:
Pakistan -- Politics and government.
Civil-military relations -- Pakistan.
Political stability -- Pakistan.
Authoritarianism -- Pakistan.
Democracy -- Pakistan.